Thursday, May 29, 2014

Catwoman #31 Review

Written by: Ann Nocenti
Art by: Pat Olliffe
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: May 28, 2014

Where's the Race?

Is it crazy that I can't wait to crack open every issue of Catwoman the minute I get it?  It's become more than just watching a car wreck.  I am actually beginning to enjoy the awful stories, laugh worthy dialogue and ridiculous situations.  Maybe it's the Stockholm syndrome talking, but I love Ann Nocenti's Catwoman.  It's just fun in it's awfulness.  If you are in the same boat then I'm happy to say that Catwoman #31 is awful. Not awfully good, just plain awful.  Let the fun begin.

The Race of Thieves continues and I really don't know what the hell it's all about.  Is it about getting the big score, saving children with missing teeth or rescuing Mr. Stone's son?  It may be one, the other or all of the above.  Roulette's in charge and may be making it up as she goes.

You know who else makes things up?  Ann Nocenti, that's who.  Catwoman starts off the issue in the Mirror World and escapes by breaking every rule of common sense.  In fact, everyone in the Mirror World should now be dead thanks to her.  However, in Ann Nocenti's world, Selina actually wins the round of The Race of Thieves.  I think I missed something.

Roulette then announces the Race of Thieves is global and the next round is in...Gotham.  Where they already are.  Awesome.  Then the book cranks it up to eleven.  Selina teams up with a rookie, there's a turf war in the coroner's office (Ann's words, not mine), a strange Catwoman flashback and a woman trying to clear her family name.  This is some race!

All the thieves eventually meet up, and just when you think you know the winner of the round, Roulette changes the rules again, maybe...again, I'm not really sure.  The issue ends with Selina agreeing to go undercover for the Gotham PD to solve a murder.  And scene.

Where do I start?  The Race of Thieves may be the worst story arc I've ever read.  I really don't know what's going on and when I do get a grip, it still doesn't make any sense.  Seriously, Nocenti likes to over explain everything in this book except the main plot point.  Then to make things worse, throws in a bunch of ridiculous, under explained loose ends.

 Then there's the dialogue.  It's downright horrible. Besides being overdone and heavy handed,  Ann Nocenti loves people to address each other with their names over and over.  Here is Ann writing a scene taking place at the Weird Science office:

Jim: Hi Eric, what are you reading?
Eric: Thanks for asking, Jim, I'm reading Catwoman.
Jim: Oh, is it good, Eric?
Eric: No, it's horrible, Eric.
Jim: Eric, you're Eric, I'm Jim, Eric.
Eric: Jim, Eric, Jim, Jim.
Jim: Eric, Eric, Eric, Raef?
Raef: What the hell are you guys talking about, Jim and Eric?

It's that bad.  Something else that's been bothering me is that Selina joined the Suicide help line during Gothtopia, but kept her job when it ended.  That isn't how Gothtopia worked.  Again, Ann Nocenti making stuff up again.  It gets worse this issue when Selina fudges some documents and now she's a big wig in the department.  Complete nonsense.  I'm sure I'm missing some other ridiculous things in this issue, but you get the's horrible.  It's still fun to point at and laugh.

On a positive note, Pat Olliffe's art is pretty good.  It may be a little hard to see behind the thousands of word bubbles explaining every scene.  It must be hard to draw a book for a writer who doesn't let the art do any of the storytelling.

Bits and Pieces:

Catwoman #31 continues the utter nonsense that is the Race of Thieves.  The plot makes no sense, the dialogue is horrible and just when you thought it couldn't, it gets worse.  Pat Olliffe's art is good, but it's all window dressing to Nocenti's over descriptions.  After all that, I read this issue with a smile on my face that only Ann Nocenti can give.  Just when you think she's hit rock bottom, she digs a little deeper.  Keep digging Ann, keep digging.



  1. Does anyone know why DC continues to allow Ann to write Catwoman? Her Katana series was cancelled and Green Arrow was so bad, they had to replace her and the book not only went up in caliber but in sales. Is it connections she has or a contract?

  2. I've read in the past that it's her connections. She is lifelong friends with someone high up at DC that said she has a job until she wants to leave. I hope she wants to real soon!

  3. I only read this becuase of the rogues!! If they werent in these issues I wouldnt even bother, but looking at how they are being probably going to drop it..should I???

  4. If you want my honest opinion, Byron, I'd say drop it like a bad habit. Ann Nocenti will only break your heart with her nonsensical stories and horrible dialogue. These aren't our Rogues!

    Unfortunately, they are busy dying over in The Flash!!!

  5. Lmao!! Ill take your advice, and dont know if you heard but charles soule
    recently said he was thinking of making mirror master a villian for the red lanterns, now that is something im interested on!!

    1. sounds crazy. Whatever Soule writes is bound to be good, though. Hope Scudder does better in Red Lanterns than in the last Flash.